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Poland firefighters pass the boot during Black Friday fundraiser

December 2, 2011
By Richard Sberna
Throughout the year, firefighters from the Western Reserve Joint Fire District do some of the most important work there is. During the holiday season, however, they take a few days to trade their fire helmets for Santa caps during the Poland Fireman’s Association’s “Christmas at Our House” charity drive.

Actually, footwear plays a greater role during the annual fundraiser.

Firefighters, each with a boot, collected donations from motorists at the intersections of U.S. 224 and Ohio routes 616 and 170 in Poland Village from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Black Friday.

“We had another great year,” said firefighter J.R. Warren, co-chair of this year’s program with firefighter John Walsh, of their collection efforts last Friday. The money will go towards providing 21 needy families in Poland with gift baskets of non-perishable food items, gift coupons for groceries and toys for the children. Families are selected from a list of prospective recipients provided by churches and schools in the village and township.

The next step is purchasing the gift and food items, which Warren says the firefighters make a day out of, including a potluck lunch and help from their own families with the shopping.

He stressed that every dollar collected stays in Poland, with all purchases made at local businesses and each gift basket going to a Poland family. Warren also emphasized that the anonymity of each recipient family is protected, with all contact information destroyed following the distribution of the baskets.

Thanks to the generosity of those who filled the boots with cash, Poland firefighters will be able to deliver a merrier Christmas to underprivileged families in the village and township.

Article Photos

Motorists stop to donate money to firefighters Jesse Plaskett and Janett Ziegler, who were collecting funds on U.S. 224 for the Poland Fireman’s Association’s annual “Christmas at Our House” on Nov. 25. The program helps needy Poland families with food and toys at Christmas.

 
 

 

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